Rising star found dead

2012-01-14 00:00

ACTOR Muzi Clive Ngwenya (30), the runner-up in Class Act, last year’s acting reality show on SABC 1, has been found dead.

His body was found in a house in Bramley, Johannesburg, on Tuesday when police were called by a friend who said he was not answering the door.

Police spokesperson Moses Maphakela said yesterday the details surrounding the actor’s death are still sketchy and an inquest docket has been opened.

“When we arrived at the house we kicked down the door and found him on the floor. The forensic investigator was called and he was pronounced dead. We are still waiting for the postmortem results to tell us more,” he said.

Class Act judge and casting agent Moonyeenn Lee described Ngwenya as a charming young man on the verge of a fabulous career.

“We are all devastated by the news. Everyone loved him, both as a person and as an actor,” she said.

Ngwenya’s star was set to shine even brighter this month as he was identified as one of the faces of M-Net’s Mzansi Magic channel for 2012. Channel head Lebone Maema said the young actor was contracted to start working on the channel’s key production later this month.

He previously acted in the stage show Mabrr The Musical, a tribute to the late Brenda Fassie. His co-star, veteran actor Jerry Mofokeng, said he was on his way to comfort Ngwenya’s family this weekend. “I first heard about the news when they broke on social networks on Thursday night and I was very disturbed. The one image that stuck in my mind was the wonderful performance he delivered on the closing of the musical. I have never seen such amazing talent,” he said.

Ngwenya had a role as a mob leader in the movie Winnie alongside American superstars Jennifer Hudson and Terrence Howard.

His close friend and co-star in SABC 1’s popular local drama Fallen, Simon Magwaza, said he is struggling to come to terms with his best friend’s demise.

“When I last saw him in November before the set broke up he was very happy and chatty. He was one of those active people that every one enjoyed having around. I cannot believe he is gone,” he said.

• thandiwe,jumo@witness.co.za

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